The major U.S. stock indexes veered higher in afternoon trading, recovering from an early slide. Energy companies led the rally, climbing along with the price of crude oil. The gains came a day after the market had its worst drop since September. Exxon Mobil and Chevron each jumped about 5 percent, by far the largest gains in the Dow Jones industrial average.
KEEPING SCORE: The Dow rose 246 points, or 1.5 percent, to 16,398 as of 1:15 p.m. Eastern Time. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index gained 29 points, or 1.6 percent, to 1,920. The Nasdaq composite added 77 points, or 1.7 percent, to 4,603.
THE QUOTE: “You’re seeing a little bit of surprise on oil prices coming back up,” said Terry DuFrene, global investment specialist at J. P. Morgan Private Bank.
TURBULENT RUN: The market is coming off a broad downturn on Wednesday that sent the S&P 500 index into what’s known as a correction, or a drop of 10 percent or more from a peak. The slump through the first eight trading days of 2016 represents the worst start to a year in the history of both the S&P 500 and the Dow. The turbulent run reflects mounting worries on Wall Street about the slowdown in China, plunging oil prices and the implications for U.S. corporations.
SECTOR VIEW: The 10 sectors in the S&P 500 index rose, with energy notching the biggest gain, 4.1 percent. Williams Cos. led the gainers, adding $2.27, or 16.7 percent, to $15.88.
OIL BUMP: Exxon Mobil added $3.83, or 5.1 percent, to $79.48, while Chevron rose $3.76, or 4.6 percent, to $85.09. Freeport-McMoRan gained 35 cents, or 9.4 percent, to $4.09. NRG Energy rose 66 cents, or 6.7 percent, to $10.48.
GOOD QUARTER: JPMorgan Chase rose 2.9 percent after the bank reported earnings that were better than analysts expected. The stock added $1.67 to $59.02.
HOLIDAY BLUES: Best Buy slid 9.2 percent after the electronics store operator reported a drop in sales during the holiday season. The company also said it expects a wider drop in fourth-quarter revenue, partly on weak mobile phone and personal device sales. The stock was the biggest decliner in the S&P 500 index. It shed $2.70 to $26.56.
SHAKY CAM: GoPro slumped 16.4 percent a day after the wearable camera maker disclosed plans to eliminate about 100 jobs. The move comes after the company’s fourth-quarter sales fell far short of its expectations. GoPro lost $2.39 to $12.22.
OIL PRICES: A day after U.S. crude oil briefly fell below $30 a barrel for the first time since late 2003, it was up 79 cents, or 2.6 percent, to $31.27 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, a benchmark for international oils, was up 22 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $30.50 a barrel in London.
OVERSEAS: In Europe, Germany’s DAX dropped 1.7 percent and France’s CAC 40 slid 1.8 percent. The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares was 0.7 percent lower. In Asia, Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 dived 2.7 percent, South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.9 percent and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng lost 0.6 percent. The Shanghai Composite rebounded nearly 2.0 percent.
BONDS AND CURRENCIES: Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.11 percent from 2.09 percent late Wednesday. The euro fell to $1.0854 from $1.0876, while the dollar rose to 118.22 yen from 117.78 yen.
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